Tuesday, January 5, 2016


Weekend fun.

First, the sad: said goodbye to my brother on Monday after we dropped him off at university. His spring semester is starting so we won't get to see him again for a little while.

Before that, though, I took a ton of pictures of pretty hotel rooms with workable kitchens. (First one shared with the lil brother, second one was ALL FOR MEEE.)

This was the Pensacola one AKA the One That Had to Be Shared:
Brother offered to sleep on the couch-bed-thingy if he got the desk.
I begrudgingly agreed.

My dad wanted to do something for the holiday break and decided to drive us for almost eleven hours alll the way to Pensacola so we could visit the National Naval Aviation Museum. We were there for hours--my parents went on the tour while my brother and I ran around everywhere, climbed into available pilot seats, marveled at all katanas collected from World War 2, and made about two hours worth of Metal Gear Solid jokes. (Actually, it was, like, the same two jokes repeated ad infinitum).

I took a thousand pictures and about 900 of them were blurry as all hell, and then the remaining are at weird angles or odd lighting attempts.

I've only got a handful useful pictures to show here. It ended up being a weird Brother-Exclusive Photo Shoot, but I kept shoving the camera in his face and then he kept jumping in front of it.
We had so much fun climbing into this. It spun!

We were there for five hours, I think, and nearing the end of the fifth hour, I kept having to drag my dad away from the planes that blocked the exit. He might have stayed for eight hours--admiring the individual machinery from multiple angles, taking thirty to forty minutes on each plane and helicopter--if he didn't have a pesky family that, like, gets bored and wants to visit bookstores and eat dinner at some point. 

But at about the twentieth time he got distracted on the way to the exit, a realization hit me. And I was all, "Dad. . .you don't even like flying!"

(He really doesn't. He's terrified of flying. Yet ironically he's been on more planes than the rest of us combined).

And he just went, "So?"

He just likes machines. Any and all of them.

On Sunday, we drove down to Gainesville and stayed there for the night. I documented my hotel greatness once more:
(it's like the hotel paid me for product placement. If only)

And then the next day I took selfies of my wild morning hair and an outfit that looks like pajamas and was just as comfortable as pajamas:
Not sure why I felt the need to kick the mirror.
I think the door kept trying to open.
We took my brother around to the grocery store and JC Penny so he wouldn't starve/be-perpetually-cold during the winter. We said goodbye around midday and got back to Miami at twilight.

Since 50% of the weekend was spent in a car, I spent a lot of that time contorted about in the backseat, alternating between:
  • Listening to music 
  • Listening to the Blackbirds audiobook
  • Talking to my brother about his book
  • Bothering my brother
  • Reading Grace of Kings 
  • Reading a ton of Wikipedia pages and online articles about people who've disappeared without a trace.

Yeah. About that last point: it's what I like to do on all holiday breaks, apparently.

Whenever I'm in a hotel room, I pull up stories about kidnapped people. This weekend, I read extensively about the infamous Amy Lynn Bradley and Madeleine McCann abductions (although of course I already somewhat knew about them), as well as some interviews involving the Natalee Holloway disappearance.

Mid-trip I realized this isn't really an uncommon thing for me to do. Not sure where this obsession is rooted in or why it awakens when I'm in a hotel or on the road, but it sure is persistent.

My brother read and finished Steelheart in the time it took to get to and from Pensacola, and about the fifth time I interrupted his reading to mention Madeliene McCann's case and showed him a single picture he was like, "Please stop."

Weird thing is it freaks him out almost as much as it freaks me out. I am not immune. I think I gave myself an actual nightmare after reading up on the Bradley sightings.

And just btw, I requested from the library Gavin de Becker's The Gift of Fear about three days ago.

Might be an interesting read.

Human-Trafficking-And-Disappearances-Obsession aside, twas a nice mini-vacation! Got some good pictures out of it.

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